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News, 10/8/2009

Ministry for Foreign Affairs follows the bribery hearing in Costa Rica

The Ministry for Foreign Affairs is following the broad court case on corruption in Costa Rica, where civil servants and businessmen as well as the country’s former president have been defendants. The court handed down its decision on the case on Tuesday, 6 October 2009.

In accordance with an agreement made between a Finnish exporter and a local buyer, hospital equipment was supplied to Costa Rica in 2003. The deal was financed with credit from a Finnish bank; the credit was guaranteed by the government guarantee agency Finnvera. The Ministry for Foreign Affairs granted interest support for the credit out of development cooperation funds. Interest support was granted for the 32 million dollar loan taken out by the State of Costa Rica, which Costa Rica used to purchase hospital equipment from the company that was then Instrumentarium. The deal was linked with serious suspicion of corruption in 2004.

The Costa Rican authorities then launched their own investigation. Commissioned by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, the international goods inspection service company SGS (Societé Générale de Surveillance S.A.) carried out an independent investigation of the delivery of hospital equipment to Costa Rica in early 2005.

In Finland, the Central Criminal Police is conducting a preliminary investigation of alleged misconduct. The preliminary investigation was begun following the request for an inquiry made by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs in 2005.

More information:

pdfLimited Review Mission on Project Implementation of the Technical Upgrade Project of the Health Care System in Costa Rica (PDF, 1,7 MB)

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Updated 10/8/2009

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